- Nov 10, 2006
Republicans' next big play is to 'scare the hell out of Washington' by rewriting the Constitution. And they're willing to play the long game to win.
Conservative activists are making steady progress toward convening a never-before-accomplished convention that could reshape the Constitution.
It would become a conservative nation.
And the transformation, Santorum said, culminates with an unprecedented event: a first-of-its-kind convention to rewrite the Constitution.
"You take this grenade and you pull the pin, you've got a live piece of ammo in your hands,"
The second method — never before accomplished — involves two-thirds of US states to call a convention. The power to call for a convention belongs solely to state legislatures, who would pass and ratify amendments without a governor's signature, Congress' intervention, or any input from the president.
What's new now is the ever-evolving power coupling of a corporation-backed ideological juggernaut led by ALEC, a nonprofit organization with close ties to large tobacco and drug companies, and a determined Republican Party increasingly dominating many of the nation's 50 statehouses.
If they were successful, a constitutional convention led by conservatives could trigger sweeping changes to the Constitution.
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Their goals include gutting federal environmental standards, nixing nationwide education requirements, and creating an incredibly high threshold for Washington, DC, or a territory to earn statehood. Some would like to make it difficult, if not impossible, for someone — National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Anthony Fauci, for example — to work for decades within the federal government.
And this is how they've been doing it:
The GOP spent decades investing in control of state legislatures through well-funded and resourced groups like the Republican State Leadership Committee, which has spent tens of millions over the last few decades locking down GOP control of state legislatures, statewide offices, and judgeships.
Those sustained investments have secured GOP dominance in state legislatures for a generation — and guarantee the GOP would also have the upper hand in a convention.
A new report by the Center for Media and Democracyfirst shared with Insider finds that Republicans would control at least 27 and up to 31 out of 50 delegations to a convention, based on delegate selection processes in applications passed thus far.
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